3 articles Tag study

Who Knew Studying Could be Fun? 5 Ways to Enjoy Your Studies as an Adult

Photo by Kyle Gregory Devaras on Unsplash

Whether you’re studying to further your career, secure the job you’ve always wanted, or you just want to have the satisfaction of some additional studies and qualifications under your belt, then returning to education as an adult can seem like the perfect solution. But is it possible to juggle the responsibilities of adulthood – parenting, holding down a job etc and yet still have a positive student experience? Is it possible to actually enjoy your studies while you’re juggling everything else in your life?

Read on for 5 ways you can enjoy your studies as an adult.

Get a little help

Ask any student about which aspect of their studies they dislike the most and the majority will tell you that checking for grammar and spelling errors, proofreading their work and trying to get their heads around correct citations is really what drags them down. Luckily, there is help at hand for all these little tasks in the form of proofreading services, spelling and grammar checks and even an apa citation generator! All of which can be found online, click the link to find out more.

Get some good music

Beware! Not everyone is able to study and listen to music at the same time. It just depends on how your brain works. For some, listening to heavy song lyrics and writing a compelling essay about 19th century art comes naturally. For others, it could be a bit of a hindrance. If you think you might struggle, try listening to some movie soundtracks instead or perhaps some classical music. Before you know it, you’ll be the star of your own study montage!

Use stationary you love

Forget those boring old pens and pads that remind you of school or your place of work. This is your study time, so make it your own. Use stationary that ignites your desire to write, take notes and gives you inspiration. From pretty post-it notes and thought provoking notebooks to highlighters in gorgeous colours, pretty pens with fluffy toppers or sleek and stylish fountain pens that compliment your stunning annotations. Head to the stationary store and treat yourself!

Try studying somewhere different

You might have created the best studying area that allows you to concentrate and work without interruption. However, even the most productive of workspaces can feel a little stagnant. To shake things up and to make your studies more fun, consider studying somewhere different. Head outside to the garden and enjoy the sunshine or head to a café and treat yourself to a slice of cake. You deserve it! You could even consider reading your study materials in the bath or writing some study notes whilst waiting for the bus.

Give your memory a boost!

Struggling to remember all those dates and names? Try turning the trickier elements of your studies into rhyme or poems to help make them stick. You could draw pictures that trigger your memory or write flash cards and stick them all over the house!

A whole new Supermum: The Academic Mother

hands-woman-legs-laptopIt is expected in today’s society, that a mother be able to juggle both family life and career. Yet, the realities of having children still pose difficulties when it comes to returning to work. Whether it’s to continue academic studies, or to start afresh on a whole new career: finding that balance to fulfil both roles can be daunting.

But, it is possible.

The archaic notion that a woman’s role is in the kitchen is gone. More women now are the main bread earners in their family, and are able – with some support – to balance their roles as both mother and worker. It may not be as perfect as the glossy, high quality Instagram photographs of “super-mums” show, but with the help of improving technology, it is now more feasible than ever. Not only get to a degree after childbirth, but to study for a better career that will earn a more comfortable living for the family.
So, how is it done?

Time management. Motherhood will already demand this, so creating a routine that incorporates study time and time with your children is a must.
Work out schedules that will be realistic and time conserving.
Enlist support, not only from family and friends, but also from your study advisor; and embrace any resources offered by your university or college.
Even simple things like getting up an hour earlier, doing your studying while your children do their homework, or doing extra studying while your child sleeps, can all make a big difference.

Also, embrace technology. It has never been easier to sign up for – as well as to acquire – an online university degree. By now, most large and well-known universities offer certain courses online, some even for free! But it might be a good idea to check universities that offer the possibility to study online full-time, like NC IUL for example. Besides the ease and convenience of applying and enrolling, you are offered many different and diverse areas of study to choose from.

Online courses provide greater flexibility: you can work at your own pace from the comfort of your own home, opening up a new range of choices for the new mum looking to keep informed and develop a career while away from work, or making a complete career change. This flexibility does not mean an easier pathway to a desired career. Most online courses will require the same amount of coursework as classroom courses; but you will be able to do so at your own schedule.

Make up a designated computer space for online study that will have the same effect as a campus classroom. This can be anything from your dining room to the campus library: the key is to have an area that is yours for studying alone with no distractions for that set time. Take advantage of supporting resources offered by the online course, and keep in touch with fellow students and lecturers with social media to help with your studies.

Above all else, know your limit. Make sure to schedule downtime, from both studying and your children. If you don’t, you risk a breakdown; and both your studying and your family will suffer.
It will be hard work, and there will be stressful times; but the rewards will be worth the efforts.

Space in My Brain

During a conversation the other day (though I can’t remember who with, which will seem more poignant as this post mithers on), I started to think about all of the superfluous information that’s stored in my brain. I remember facts and figures, phone numbers, post codes, dates, even the registration numbers of cars that myself and my family have owned. The majority of this data is totally surplus to requirement, so wouldn’t it be great if we could do what we do with our hard drives, have a spring clean, delete the data we no longer need and free up some space for other stuff.

In 2009, I started a Psychology degree and one thing that struck me was that I struggled to retain information a lot more than when I was at school. I know that this is the curse of the Adult Learner, in fact, according to John Massari from Duke University “… concepts of synaptic plasticity can be applied to improving the way we learn early in life. If certain kinds of activities are not learned during critical periods, it may difficult or even impossible to learn them later.”. In fact, he postulates that our brains change at around the age of 13. But it did all make me wonder if deleting my Nan’s postcode and the name of every teacher I’ve ever had would make space for data that’s more relevant to me now.

I’d love to be able to hook my brain up to a PC, trawl through my memory banks and delete all of the crap that I no longer need. A bit ‘Inception’-inspired, I suppose.

But then, this got me thinking too. What if I deleted the wrong data? I don’t mean like clicking format on the section that contains my name and address, I mean deleting the data that we, in our current lives, deem to be unnecessary, only to discover that a minute event or occurrence is an intrinsic part of what makes us who we are. I could get rid of the name of my pen pal who I met in Hastings in 1992, only to realise that meeting her set me on a particular path.

So, I guess my question is this; what would you do? If you had the option to look at every individual file in your brain and delete the ones you no longer want or think you need, would you do it?

Just a bit of food for your already over-stuffed brain on this rainy Saturday morning!